Walking with Dinosaurs

January 31, 2009

Sue, Kelli, Kaldun and I went downtown last night for some food and to see a show at the BOK Center.  Turns out we couldn’t get any food because everywhere was a 45 minute wait, but the show was awesome.  Walking With Dinosaurs is a live action show with costumes for smaller animals and animatronics for the giants.  Not lame costumes or cornball robots – it was VERY well done. The biggest creature was either the brontosaurs at 40 feet tall or the T-Rex.

Each animal was fully articulate. The muscles moved when it walked. The tail counter balanced. The head, eyes, mouth, nostrils and skin moved and jiggled. Dang cool.   The plants would grow and wilt, flowers came into being at a certain point.  All around interesting stuff IMHO.  We sat in the lower section (hot linked photo, we didn’t take any) so the big ones towered above us.

The basic story line was a paleontologist going through the history of dinosaurs from the first species to when they went extent.About 150,000,000 years of history.Various light shows, projected scenes, and live action animals interacted on about 2/3rd of a hockey rink. It was very cool and educational to a large degree. We all loved it and I would recommend it for kids Kalduns age.

Categories: General.

Guess who’s back!

January 29, 2009

Alrighty then, lets start this anew.  I’ve been waiting to do this right and really post something impressive.   I give up on that plan. I shall work on posting when I can,what I can.  A snippet over lunch or preferably a picture collage.   I’m on it! For pictures I think I will just use Picasa from now on.  I’ve decided I’m too lazy to use the weblogs.us server and it has proven to be somewhat unreliable for photos in the past (nice excuse, eh?).  College football is over, it’s cold outside, no exuses. So here’s the short and dirty over the last year:

1. I got a new job at a general practice law firm.  I’ve done everything from a $5,000,000 case, to a libel, to tresspass, probate, fraud, basically all the “left over” of the firm.  The principle  of the firm was an assistant DA for a long time an tries to concentrate on criminal work, another lady specilaizes in domestic, and so on until I end up with the “other” catagory. An interesting job for a young attorney  to figure out what there is out there and get some idea of the various areas of law.

2. Kelli has been traveling all over the place for work.  Not too often, but here and there.  Albuquerque, Denver, Dallas, Little Rock, and HAWAII!  She spent a couple week in Honolulu working 16 hours a day.  Hard to give her much sympathy though.  Look, some pictures!  Click the picture below for the full album.  These links might die as I figure out how I want to organize the Picasa, so lick fast!

From Kelli Hawaii

3. Kaldun is a blue-green belt in Tae Kwon Do, can play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the violin,  and staying out of trouble in the 3rd grade.  He likes shooting, lizards, bugs, hiking, getting dirty, and screwing off on the computer.  A fish to water, I tell ya’.

4. We’ve been trying to do a lot of hiking this winter.  The manic Oklahoma weather has seen a swing from 74F to 14F in one day… so when the nice swing hits I’m out as much as possible.  Recently my Mom has brought plenty of crappy cold ice filled Iowa weather down with her and Kaldun has missed the week of school.  Bah! More to follow.

From Misc.

Really really this time.  But just in case I’m not going to tell anyone I’m posting again.

- Jesse

Categories: General.

I suck

November 13, 2008

I admit it.  No promises.  But at least I’m thinking about it again, right?

Categories: General.

Spring…

April 10, 2008

So much for staying on top of this. I keep saying “when I get pictures ready.” Then I wait so long that any given thing seems worthless to post… so lets catch up and try to get to the pictures this weekend.

1) My bank took care of the French situation just fine.

2) Kelli and Kaldun went to Key West with my mom, and had a great time. Tons of pictures on the way. They flew into Miami and drove to Key West and did all the normal stuff: butterfly garden, beech, sail boat and saw tons of fish, iguanas and birds. Kaldun’s highlight was when a pigeon built a nest where he could see it from his hotel. Ahhh… money well spent. ;-)

3) Mean while, I stayed home and worked and recovered from some minor surgery. In case anyone was wondering when Kelli and I are having more children, the answer is never. A Friday off and a week feeling like I got kicked in the junk solved that potential problem. Certainly sucked, but the surgery nor the recovery should be a deterrent for anyone considering it (and I’m a big wuss).

For anyone that cares (if you don’t want to read details skip this paragraph for the love of god!): many Mds will not perform a vasectomy unless you are married, have kids, or give another good reason. You have to meet the MD with your spouse a week before hand since it is permanent. The procedure itself lasts about 20 – 30 minutes. With a double dose of Valium the entire surgery was way too relaxed and conversational. Pain wise the actual procedure was nearly painless – the only thing I felt was the prick of the needle and slight pressure for about 10 seconds on either side. Almost identical to getting Novocaine – but not. From there on out it was painless for the next 3 hours or so. Then flat on your back for 2.5 days and lots of Tylenol. The day after is very sore, so long as I was flat on my back no problem. Day 2 is a little better and I shuffled around a bit more (the MD said near total immobility the first two days is key to a good recovery). Day 3 I was at work but none to happy about it – I was mobile enough that there was no real problems but was down as soon as I was home. Day 5 I went to a basketball game. By Day 7 I was “normal” but for running, jumping or a firm dog nose to the crotch (dumb dog). 2 weeks out and totally back to normal. So there’s that.

4) it is Spring in Oklahoma. Temperatures ranging from a morning frost to the low 80′s and all the thunderstorms and tornado watches that go along with it. Currently several suburbs had to cancel school due to flooding. My yard (front and back) could float an empty canoe… better than ice though!

5) Kaldun is doing very well in school. He improved from a straight B student to a mostly B and some As student. According to his teacher, he knows the material well enough but too frequently needs to be redirected to task on day to day work and on occasion, just decides to not finish a timed test. Argh! But his behavior has vastly improved and we have a great relation with his teacher (too good probably).

He still loves anything to do with outdoors or science. He is at the level of reading now that he enjoys being able to read signs, menus, and all the common stuff one needs to participate in daily life. I don’t think he really enjoys reading books yet though – still an effort.

6) While Kelli was in Key West I treated myself to a brand new acoustic guitar (Alverez RD8). I also got a book to actually learn how to play guitar and realized that, in spite of “playing” guitar for over a decade I really don’t know what I’m doing. I think lessons may be in order.

Which is OK, because I think we have Kaldun convinced that Piano lessons are a good idea. I told him he can take any lessons he wants and he has expressed some interest in that direction. So perhaps we can find a shop to do both at the same time on a Thursday night, or whatever. It’s on the to do list.

7) Tulsa finished the basketball season last weekend at 25-14 and taking the inaugural CBI Championship.  For how bad the year started, it ended REALLY strong (15-4, with 2 losses to Memphis in there).  Spring football is already here and ‘ll get my new season ticket assignment a week from today.  Then I guess I’m sports-less until the fall.  more time for pictures?

– - -

OTHERWISE, pretty much the status quo. We should be busting out the sail boat before too long (new neighbors, anyone know a good place to store a sail boat!) and may be buying an Xterra to pull it. Well, that and a wife, kid, 2 dogs and camping crap jammed into a Nissan is a little tight. An Xterra or a rental house, one of the two. I figure if I default on the SUV I get nothing, if I default on the rent house I can always count on the government to bail me out!

- Jesse

Categories: General.

Screwed in France!

March 10, 2008

Argh! I’ve been screwed in France of all places.

I’m good at security. I shred all documents that have anything on them. I review my statements. I only have 2 credit cards. I use PayPal online whenever possible. I don’t do fly by night transactions and whenever possible I use Discover Card. But when they don’t take discover I use my debit card.

However, I am not very good at checking my accounts. I will look once during the month and then go over my actual statements at the end of the month. But today I happened to check and see if a deposit at an ATM had been posted, and I see strange POS transactions pending on my debit card. A quick call to Kelli and she had no idea either. All today:
MES L3 ADUP $17.04
MARIOAUD $194.39
MARIONAUD $37.16
France Telecom $23.40
Rel. CEDRE $41.15
MAXIMS $10.90
PROD REG FRANCE $165.83
RELAIS H $54.66
RELAIS H $35.78
RELAIS H $38.39
. . .
and so on. I’m not in France. I have an ATT phone. I don’t know what that other crap is!

I called my bank and asked them what was going on . The point of sale for all that was FRANCE. Again, I’m not in France. They canceled my card immediately. But, here is what’s strange, even though they are “pending” and I still have my money – they have it frozen and are obligated to release it! It’s my money!!! Screw that. I have to wait and “contest” the charges once they actual post and they take my damn money. The worst part is the bastard was spending Euros and I have to suffer not only a poor exchange rate, but cover the conversaion charges. DEATH. The lady on the phone said it should not be an issue contesting this and I had her put a note in saying I caught it INSTANTLY, even as charges were being made.

The last charge on that card was on a government website. Before that it goes way back, so who knows.

On a happier note I got tickets to Phantom of the Opera today (on a different card).

Also, as a point of clarification: my no fast food pledge does not mean “eat healthy,” just no fast good. Arby’s, BK, McDonalds and the like.

Too irritated to really post anything else. Stupid Frenchmen.

- Jesse

Categories: General.

Gone Campin’

March 3, 2008

February is over! Thank the gods. I am giving up something each month this year just for the hell of it. I went with no pop in January and no alcohol in February (which I promptly reintroduced to my system on the 1st). March is no fast food month.

Fisrt flower of springOver last weekend Kaldun and I grabbed the dog, filled the car, and headed to Okmulgee State Park which is only an hour and a half south of Tulsa. The three of us (Bacchus was there, Igasa is a bit too wild) enjoyed a couple of 70+ degree days and 55 degree nights. Kevin and his son Noah met us down there on Saturday afternoon to head to the shooting range, cook on a camp fire, and drown a few worms.

Kevin and I each grabbed portions of our arsenals to teach the kids firearm safety/show off how cool the dads’ are to theKaldin shooting a .22 wee-ones (lest they forget). We brought a pair of AK-47s, a 12 gauge, a .40 S&W and a .22 long rifle with enough ammo to qualify as real Senator Inhofe electing Oklahomans. I have been drilling Kaldun on the basics for some time (never point a toy gun at people, always point at what your shooting at, trigger on the finer only if you intend to fire, you kill it – get your knife because you’re eating it) so it went pretty smoothly. after a brief rundown of the standard rules (safety on, don’t touch unless your firing, firing line reminders, never go down range, check your and others ears before firing etc.) one kid got to take the empty rifle and show us he listened. He then got one round and if he fired it following all the rules he got another… until we were comfortable enough to let them shoot series of rounds at a time.

And they did well. Kaldun had to go sit in the car once for touching the gun when he wasn’t firing (literally touching, but this was not the time ot be lenient with the rules) and they both would just set the gun on the ground when they were out of bullets… but otherwise they did very well. Ok, Noah did start to check down the barrel when he was out of ammo but his dad was all over that situation.

Kaldun was a relative ace with the 22. He had never shot even a BB gun before and he averaged 4/10 shooting clays at ~40 yards. He enjoyed shooting the .40 but the gun itself was a bit heavy and since he was never allowed more than 1 in the chamber it wasn’t as much fun (laying down you can’t drop a rifle and accidentally shoot someone, with a pistol you could). He even got to squeeze off a single round from the AK with significant help. When he saw me shooting trap he wanted to try the 12 gauge but I convinced him that might not be a good idea and they ran off to have a mud fight well behind the scenes.

Kaldun the fishermenWe drown some worms (no fish), burned some logs, and offed a few beers (it was March 1st, not February any longer!) before climbing into the sack on a clear and Chilly night. Kaldun was fine the whole time (but-for a little excessive fire playing ::insert my moms snicker here ::) and Bacchus was a model camping dog catching 2 Racoons trying to sneak into our camp, a deer off in the distance, and a park ranger coming for fees (each greeted with a low growl alerting me to their presence, not a chomp). Otherwise I think we saw MAYBE a dozen other people all weekend. Good times had by all.

The rest of the images for the camping trip can be sen here.

- Jesse

Categories: General.

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